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How To Keep A New Year’s Resolution

How To Keep A New Year’s Resolution

Make this year the year for a successful New Year’s resolution! A little front-work and planning will keep one motivated all year. Everyone has seen the ‘January gym phenomenon’, when memberships rise and people seem to appear from hibernation; only to see it return to normal crowd by mid-February.

How To Keep A New Year's ResolutionPin
New Year Plan

Statistics vary, but only about 64% of adults that make a New Year’s resolution continue with it beyond the first month and 97% fail before the years end; however, armed with a little drive and willingness to plan – anyone can ensure a successful change for the better. First, set a goal, then plan it, and then “make it automatic”!

1. How to Set a Goal for the New Year

Mostly everyone has read or heard advice on setting goals. Generally, they are advised to start small with easy goals and to work up to ‘real’ goals. A more valuable approach is to approach a goal initially like a dream. Keith Ferrazzi wrote in his book “Who’s Got Your Back”, “The only difference between a dream and a goal, is that a goal is put into writing.” Having a great desire to achieve a goal will provide the conviction to see it through. This alone makes dreaming first invaluable and provides a huge advantage for the goal setter by setting a goal they truly want to achieve. First dream, then proceed to make that dream a task – a specific, measurable, and attainable goal.

The number one New Year’s resolution is to ‘workout more,’ closely followed by ‘eating better.’ While these are terrific goals – they lack any specifics and allow for several scapegoats. Define a dream specifically before making it a goal. Perhaps one may want to workout more, but more specifically they want to lose 25 lbs by walking three times a week for 20 minutes. Now the dream is a goal. It is now a specific, measurable, and attainable task.

An apple and measuring tape on a scale.

2. Set a Goal Timeline

The number one reasons that a New Year’s resolution fail are time, priority, and accountability. Setting a timeline for a goal, tracking it, and making it accountable will guarantee a follow-through. Since the goal is specific, you can easily set a timeline detailing measurable progress over:

  • one month
  • three months
  • nine months
  • one year

This system of check-ins for goal progress should be scheduled on a calendar, PDA, or planner. Now suddenly the goal is scheduled with a sense of expectation, priority, and accountability.

How To Keep A New Year's ResolutionPin
How To Keep A New Year’s Resolution

3. Make it Automatic

To avert one from losing track of their goal due to time constraints (or other excuses), they should ‘make it automatic’. This can be more easily achieved with some goals than others. For example, the goal of saving $100 a month for a vacation can be done by opening a savings account and having the money automatically debited from an existing checking account once a month automatically.

For the more challenging goals, making it automatic may take some initiative; perhaps thinking outside the box for ways to assure a goal’s success. One of the best ways for many is to simply schedule time for that goal. Back to the example working out more; by scheduling three walks a week in a calendar – the goal is turned into an event. Suddenly, the goal just became a priority. Setting a goal as a task or event to be done that day and making it not any more flexible than anything else on one’s agenda can have terrific results.

Regardless of the method used, it is important to find a way to ‘make it automatic.’ There are only three steps to successfully keeping a New Year’s resolution – each as important as the next.

Lyne Proulx
Lyne Proulxhttps://ottawamommyclub.ca/
Lyne Proulx is a Certified WEBB Bodywork Pet Practitioner, Certified Infant Massage Instructor (CIMI), Certified Professional Wedding Consultant, and an Event Planner. She loves all things Disney and is an avid teaholic and chocoholic. She coordinated the Annual Infant Information Day/Early Years Expo for the City of Ottawa for 8 years. She was the Queen B of the BConnected Conference, Canada's Digital Influencer and social media Conference in Ottawa and Toronto. She was also the co-chair of the Navan for Kraft Hockeyville 2009-2011 committee that organized five community events within 6 months, and helped Navan reach the top 10 finalists in Canada. In April 2011, she received the City of Ottawa Mayor's City Builder Award.

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  1. I make a resolution every year and I keep it for about two weeks. Yes I have made the gym one several times. I think is true that whatever one’s goal is it has to become a priority.

  2. Thanks for this – I am having a hard time with “yearly” goals right now. I lose focus too much BUT I am rocking a “I want to do this little thing every day” and then in a few days I will add another thing. It’s working so far – on Jan 3 lol

  3. Great tips . I like the idea of a goal timeline . It’s easy to get started on resolutions but it’s also easy to forget about them after a while . I need to start eating healthier this year .

  4. I’ve never set a goal timeline for myself but I’ve heard of the idea before. I think it would help it to be more likely to come to fruition by setting one.

  5. These are good tips, after seeing the note book “Enjoy the little things” I thought maybe recording daily thoughts and maybe a sticker if you made it though the day.
    One of my goal is no diet pop (so bad for you) and I’ve been diet pop free for a week–only water and some coffee.


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